After almost 24 years as a lost Utah Jazz fan in New York City I will head to Salt Lake City on Tuesday to see my first game on the team’s home court. I felt like this season could be a good one for the Jazz so I decided to finally make a trip out there. Fortunately, since I am travelling alone, I was able to get a great seat (7 rows from the court, center court). If this does not seem like a big deal to you, here are some reasons why it is:
1) From the age of 8-19, my main form of coat consisted of two different Utah Jazz jackets, one a subtle purple, the other, an offensively loud purple and gold. Now the Jazz has switched to a much cooler sky and navy blue combo of colors that will allow younger kids to be proud Jazz fans without having to choose between supporting their team and speaking to girls.
2) I had to watch the Jazz lose twice in the Finals, in the home of a friend who was a Chicago Bulls fan, but who quickly jumped ship to the Nets, just in time to support Jason Kidd taking them to the finals twice, once the Bulls became terrible. And let’s not even talk about the legion of Knick fan friends I have who have only opened their mouths to jeer the Jazz’s non-title years, while ignoring their 10 consecutive losing seasons. I am already preparing to see their support roar back when the Knicks buy some free agents this Summer.
3) For one day I will not have to answer the question, “Utah Jazz? Why/How are you a Utah Jazz fan?”
4) The Utah Jazz are my favorite team in all of sports. From Malone/Stockton to Williams-Boozer and everyone in between they have always played a great style of basketball that was both educational and entertaining to a hoops fan (ignorant basketball fans might call the Jazz style “boring,” at least before Deron Williams showed up). They may not have won a championship yet, but they have always delivered a consistently good product. And maybe it’s because my comedy career reminds me of my two favorite Jazz players of all time – Stockton and Malone: it’s half-white, half-black, has never won anything, but gets strong support from people with the last name Cauvin.
Looking forward to Utah – and the team gift shop. Shockingly they don’t sell a lot of Utah Jazz merchandise in NYC, so I will be running through that place like the kids in Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory. I’ll report back on Wednesday.